The Nebraska running community will always be family to me. Beginning with the 2001 USATF Nebraska Association meeting in Lincoln. Then sitting president Frosty Anderson challenging me to develop a functional Long Distance Running component for our state. Suggesting that I put on races to raise funding for the fledgling program. Swamp Stomp, Monster Dash, Ni-Bthaska-Ke Trail Runs doing just that. All proceeds benefitting my program and my club, Team Nebraska.
Then came the sponsorships. Brooks Running the very first. Clif Bar next. Then the Lincoln Marathon. Team Nebraska grew into my vision. From 2002-2012 recognized as one of the top USATF Clubs in America. Like a father I was proud.
My USATF Nebraska family continues to grow. I celebrate their successes. I’m the grandfather now, unmet and unknown by many of my extended family. The old guy that sometimes grumbles about the departure from the original vision. But still proud. There is always a new generation, new blood, new visions. New talent.
The Bronfenbrenner Center for Transitional Research at Cornell University is conducting a study on family estrangement. Twenty two percent of the nationally representative sample pool report at least one family member is, for a variety of reasons, estranged from the remaining family. A telling mark on today’s society.
Know your USATF family’s past. The sacrifices of those early USATF pioneers Linda Kunasek, Jordan Tucker, Matt Pohren, time away from personal lives for the benefit of USATF Nebraska. Attending Nebraska annual meetings, attending the USATF National meetings. Promoting Nebraska.
Our USATF Nebraska annual meeting is in September. The national meeting is in December. Nebraska has had no national LDR representation since Linda and I took Matt and Kelly Crawford to Daytona Beach in 2012.
With just a few exceptions (Wintheiser, Runde, Starbuck from Run Guru Elite, Falcon from Team Nebraska) LRC Racing now holding sway over the state’s best athletes. Doing what I did almost twenty years ago. I may not always agree with what I see but I never fail to celebrate excellence.
2010. One Big Happy. Things have changed a lot but it is important to remember those that came before, came first.